Ah, Valentine’s day. Chocolate galore, candy hearts, and a spike in Google searches for “same-day flower delivery” from frantic husbands all across America. This year, I was inspired to do a little digging into the age-old relationship troubles between B2B sales and marketing departments. What could rekindle the romance (so to speak) between these two organizations?
To help me answer this question, I recently dug into a data set from Aberdeen research conducted in September of 2013 and published in Sales Enablement: Fulfilling the Last Frontier of Marketing-Sales Alignment. This survey conducted with 124 marketers and salespeople, posed a fairly simple question: “how valuable is each of the following metrics in measuring your company’s marketing effectiveness?” The responses suggest that maybe the disconnect between marketing and sales is only a matter of communication (sound familiar?)
The study showed that, while the 13 metrics all had some value to the majority of the respondents, the “sentiment of value” varied by metric and there were some clear distinctions between which metrics marketers, as opposed to sales leaders, value more. Of particular note were metrics measuring marketing’s impact on revenue and metrics related to brand. In other words, what may be important to marketing may not seem so important to sales, and vice versa.
ROI and marketing-generated revenue are on the minds of many marketers. In fact, the discussion is everywhere, with marketers building dashboard and MAP vendors touting their closed-loop reporting capabilities.
Beware! Metrics related to marketing’s impact on revenue may not be well received by all audiences. Now don’t get me wrong, I am a metrics driven marketer who has personally implemented closed loop revenue tracking just about everywhere I’ve been. I’ve been able to recite my team’s impact on revenue in my sleep. What I learned, and what this research suggests, is that it’s not that using these metrics is wrong. It is HOW you communicate them that matters most.
There is an opportunity for marketing to broker a discussion with sales to understand how they perceive the measurement of what marketing does, and share their views of what matters to them. Spread the love!!!!
Check out the full report, “Consider the Audience: Marketing Effectiveness Metrics for Everyone.” it is free with registration on Aberdeen.com. And, once you do, I’d love to hear what you think and what you’ve experienced. Maybe you can use this Valentine’s day as an excuse to cuddle up with your sales leadership (figuratively speaking), and get on the same page about the metrics that matter.